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C.S. Lewis: Beloved Christian Author

Clive Staples Lewis, commonly referred to as C.S. Lewis, was a renowned British writer and Anglican lay theologian who taught at Oxford and Cambridge. He wrote over 30 books and was a central member of the Oxford literary circle The Inklings.

Here‘s a quick overview of C.S. Lewis:

Full Name Clive Staples Lewis
Birthday November 29, 1898
Birthplace Belfast, Ireland
Death Date November 22, 1963
Alma mater University College, Oxford University
Notable Works The Chronicles of Narnia, Mere Christianity, The Screwtape Letters
Spouse Joy Davidman (m. 1956–1960)
Wikipedia Page Official Website

As a longtime Lewis fan, I‘m excited to provide a more in-depth look at his life and works. Lewis was an absolutely brilliant author who influenced generations with his creative Christian writings.

Early Life and Education

  • Born in Belfast, Ireland in 1898 to Albert and Florence Lewis
  • Mother died of cancer when he was 9, greatly impacting him
  • Attended boarding schools and developed love of myths and legends
  • Fought in World War I, experienced frontline combat
  • Graduated with honors from Oxford in 1920, became fellow at Magdalen College

Lewis‘ childhood shaped his imagination and intellectual interests. The early loss of his mother caused Lewis to turn away from Christianity for many years. His wartime experiences also influenced his writings on suffering and morality.

Conversion to Christianity

  • Had returned to the Church of Ireland by his early 30s
  • Friendship with J.R.R. Tolkien influential in Lewis accepting Christianity
  • Officially converted to Anglicanism in 1931 after nighttime debate with Tolkien & Hugo Dyson
  • Christianity became core of Lewis‘ life and writings thereafter

Lewis vividly recounts his conversation with Tolkien and Dyson as pivotal to embracing Christianity again as an adult. He realized Christianity was a true myth that conveyed spiritual truths.

Major Literary Works

Lewis was extremely prolific and versatile as a writer. Below I highlight some of his most celebrated works:

The Chronicles of Narnia

  • Most famous work, published between 1950-1956
  • Fantasy world of talking animals and magical creatures
  • Deeper Christian themes and imagery subtle yet meaningful
  • Most iconic character Aslan the lion as Christ-figure
  • I still re-read these books regularly and find new lessons

The Screwtape Letters

  • Published in 1942, this ingenious work took the form of letters from a demon to his apprentice
  • Provides amusing but insightful inversions of traditional morality
  • Lewis displays his wit and understanding of human nature
  • Offers wisdom relevant to living a virtuous life even today

Mere Christianity

  • Originally a series of BBC radio lectures given during WWII
  • Articulates basic doctrines of Christian faith in clear, rational way
  • Powerful analogies make profound concepts accessible
  • One of most popular introductions to core Christian beliefs
  • Lewis has rare gift for explaining theology in simple terms

Science Fiction Works

In addition to fantasy, Lewis explored science fiction in his Space Trilogy:

  • Out of the Silent Planet
  • Perelandra
  • That Hideous Strength

These creative tales incorporate themes of morality, anthropology, and epistemology. Lewis‘ talent spanned many genres.

Later Years and Legacy

  • Married American writer Joy Gresham in 1956, who tragically died of cancer in 1960
  • Raised her two sons Douglas and David after her death
  • Retired from Oxford in 1963 due to health issues
  • Died three weeks before his 65th birthday on November 22, 1963

Lewis was an immensely influential figure who helped share the Gospel message with generations worldwide through his books. His writings on Christian doctrine and themes of love, redemption, and morality still resonate strongly today. Lewis displayed a rare gift for communicating spiritual truths through fiction. His legacy lives on through the millions who continue to read his classic works.